They’ve Got To Be Joker-ing

December 19, 2008 by  
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Depending on who you spoke to, ‘The Dark Knight’ was either a cape-em-up, a crime film, a thriller or a complex indictment of the post-capitalist duality inherent in us all.

Well, if reports from The Sun are anything to go by, Nolan is going for the rather adventurous choice of making the third in the reinvented series a comedy AND a horror.

How else would you explain the laughable yet terrifying story that Nolan has cast Eddie Murphy as the Riddler and Shia Labouef as Robin?

The always reliable ‘executive sources’ told the paper that the new movie is being produced under the title of ‘Gotham’ and is set for a 2010 release.

The scary thing is, no matter how many times we check the our computer’s calendar, it keeps saying December and not 1 April.

There is hope though. Earlier this year, there were the eponymous rumours swirling that Cher would be cast as Catwoman, and those were quickly pooh-poohed by Nolan (whether Nolan used the term ‘pooh-poohed’ is also under considerable debate).

Whatever happens, and no matter how itchy our feet are currently feeling, we’re more than happy to leave everything in Nolan’s capable hands. Remember, when Ledger was first cast as the Joker, Batgeeks were up in arms.

And look how well that turned out.

Ari Folman for Congress

December 18, 2008 by  
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Ari Folman, director of the sublime Waltz with Bashir is looking set to tap into the power of animation once again, as he’s slated to write and direct a live action/animation crossover of Stanislaw Lem’s short story “The Futurological Congress” for the big screen.

Congress is the story of a seemingly utopian society with a dark underbelly of drugs and prejudice, and Folman’s ideas sound like they’re going to do justice to the scale of the story: “Think of your favorite young actress. She’ll appear that way at the beginning, and then as the film goes on, she’ll be drawn like she’s 50.” This won’t be the first time on of Lem’s works has been adapted, as both Steven Soderbergh and Adrei Tarkovsky have directed versions of Solaris.

Meanwhile, dystopia seems to be rife in Hollywood, as Ridley Scott – a man with experience of dark futures, Blade Runner style – makes inroads on his adaption of Aldous Huxley’s masterpiece Brave New World.

Australia Review: Australi-yawn

December 17, 2008 by  
Filed under Film Reviews

Australia is long. Very long. Then again, so was Titanic and Jurassic Park 2, both of which were awesome, in very different ways. The difference here is that Australia doesn’t justify its length. Whilst the story is unquestionably epic, that’s more because it’s like two one and a half hour stories patched together with a bit of narrative duct tape rather than one epic story in its own right.

An ambitious marathon of a movie set in the time leading up to Japan’s pre-WW2 bombing of the city of Darwin, Australia is a love story plagued by lazy writing that even the grand vistas of red rock and dry desert can’t hide. The characters are poorly developed, and I’m not sure if Kidman’s decision to not read the script before signing on paid out. She does her best impression of a British aristocrat – a performance which is at first sphincter-clenchingly cringeworthy, but …Read more

Batfans Push ‘Dark Knight’ Virals In Hope Of Oscar Glory

December 17, 2008 by  
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While it’s widely accepted that ‘The Dark Knight’ was one of the best films of the year – full of twists, pathos, skillful direction and quality acting – the prestigious (read: snooty) Academy is still likely to bypass all that in the view that it’s just about a man who dresses up as a bat and attempts to bludgeon sociopathic transvestites with his giant ‘bat-tank’.

But geeks are nothing if not resourceful, and armed with their trusty photoshop software they’ve begun a viral campaign that’s aiming to get the film the recognition it deserves.

And if that doesn’t work? Well, at least they’ve got some pretty, doctored Batman images to get excited about.

The Dark Campaign website has created a beautifully made ‘For Your Consideration’ video, and is currently urging fans to post playing cards to trade mag VARIETY with “Why so serious?” scribbled all over them. They’ve even mocked up a few new posters that are starting to spread across the internet like wildfire (or Rachel-Dawes-trapped-in-a-warehouse-full-of-oil-barrels fire).

And if you think that’s good, you should check out our own Christmas viral. Critics have called it a ‘directorial tour de force’, a ‘a hilarious, yet telling reflection of our troubled times’ and ‘a piercing examination into the very heart of despair.’

Find its Myspace page here, and make sure to be back every Thursday for the new Webisodes here.

Spread the word; it’d be sacrilegious not to.

Twilight Review: Twilight’s Alright

December 16, 2008 by  
Filed under Film Reviews

I was, I admit, dreading this one.

An adaption of a book designed to win over the hearts and minds of fifteen year old girls, in the hands of Catherine Hardwicke, the woman who previously directed the dire Nativity Story (although some hope glimmered with another name on her CV – Thirteen), and Melissa Rosenberg, who wrote Step Up, is not an idea to soothe this critic’s savage breast.

Surprisingly, though, Twilight is not the film I had expected to see. It’s a vampire romance of real subtlety – a sentence I never thought I’d write. Twilight maintains a darkness throughout, without ever becoming overwrought or even too ridiculous, and Robert Pattinson does a remarkable job in …Read more

Terminator 5 Announced

December 15, 2008 by  
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Talk about counting your small robotic death machines before they’ve hatched (gestated? manufactured?)

Anyway, in a moment of what is either complete confidence or incredibly presumptuous arrogance, the production company behind the upcoming Terminator Salvation has announced it is already developing the fifth movie in the franchise.

It had been revealed a while back that, if all went to plan with Salvation (and director McG didn’t produce his usual brand of celluloid guff), then the fourth would be the first in a new trilogy (a la Star Wars).

But rather than wait for, ooh, I don’t know, box-office figures or a critical reception based on more than just a well-crafted trailer, producers Derek Anderson and Victor Kubicek blurted out to Variety Magazine that it is already time to start “shaping the next part.”

Speaking at the Dubai International Film Festival, they announced that the fifth in the series is on-target for a release date of 2011 and will star Christian Bale and retain writer Jonathan Nolan, who are both already signed on for a multi-picture deal.

Golden Globes – Got Milk?

December 12, 2008 by  
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The moment which none of us have been waiting for with bated breath has finally arrived. Doubt, Frost/Nixon and the Brad Pitt vehicle Curious Case of Benjamin Button lead the pack with five nominations apiece, closely followed by the fantastic Slumdog Millionaire.

Bizarrely, Gus Van Sant’s new biopic of outspoken and ultimately tragic openly gay politician Harvey Milk has been largely ignored by the Golden Globes, with only one nomination for Sean Penn in the Best Actor category. I say bizarrely, as Milk has been harvesting great reviews from both critics and audiences (it’s got an 8.3 on IMDb.com, which for a film about homosexual rights is pretty impressive considering IMDb is an American site). Whispers of prejudice are floating around the internet, as those who have seen Milk are generally baffled by the Globes’ indifference, though there is no argument from any quarter that Penn is undeserving of his nomination. One reviewer is particularly glowing in his praise, declaring that Penn’s performance “reduces the Best Actor race to a mere formality” and that “Penn’s phenomenal talent…allows him to almost casually transcend the medium”.

Stranger still, In Bruges occupies some of the spots that Milk could and should have had. Yes, In Bruges. That one where Ralph Fiennes was woefully miscast as a cruel Cockney and Colin Farrell mumbled his way through a wooden script. Pity that, eh?

Slumdog Millionaire Review: Every Dog Will Have Its Day

December 11, 2008 by  
Filed under - Home, Film Reviews

After years of zombie plagues, smack-head toilet-diving and big-budget sci-fi horrors, many people may be surprised to find that Danny Boyle’s latest is a disarmingly charming character piece set in the beating heart of India’s largest city.

Yet as 2005’s Millions has already shown, Boyle knows ‘intimate’ and he knows ‘heart’. While comparisons can be drawn to that movie, Slumdog Millionaire is boosted by its unique, intoxicating and bewildering mash-up of Hollywood’s Fable-like sensibilities with Bollywood’s relentless sense of energy and passion.

The ‘I can’t believe they actually pull this off’ plot follows 18-year-old slum-dweller Jamal Malik’s (The Skins’ Dev Patel) extraordinary performance on the Indian version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?, and the way in which every significant moment in his life, from the heart-wrenching to the heart-affirming, have helped form his knowledge of the answers. As the first day’s show concludes, Malik is arrested on suspicion of cheating and he is forced to recall and relive each experience to a suspicious but increasingly intrigued police officer (Irrfan Khan) in order to clear his name. …Read More

Stiller Replaces Ruffalo on ‘Greenberg’ Duties

December 11, 2008 by  
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It looks increasingly likely that Ben Stiller will be joining the cast of Greenburg, the latest dra-medy (because the alternative co-ma just didn’t sound as catchy) from Noah Baumbach, the acclaimed writer-director behind indie classics such as Noah and the Whale and Margot and the Wedding.

The Hollywood Reporter has stated that Stiller will be replacing Mark Ruffalo in the role. While a definitive reason has yet to be given, it is believed that Ruffalo pulled out after the brutal death of his brother, who police say died in ‘suspicious circumstances’.

The plot is still very hush-hush, but given that it’s the brainchild of Baumbach, it will more than likely focus on the dysfunctional familial relationships and the heee-larious situations that arise from them.

Daniel Craig says “No More Bond Sequels”

December 10, 2008 by  
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I’m fairly sure my brother summed it up when the lights went up at the end of Quantum of Solace; “What was all that about then? Quantum of Solarse more like.”

Cue 20 minutes of trying to explain who the bloke from the epilogue was, why he was important, how everything actually tied into the first film and exactly what the preposterously metaphysical title actually meant.

Both Daniel Craig and the Producers seem to feel the same thing and plan to make the next film a completely standalone movie. When asked about a sequel to Quantum of Solace, Craig said “No f***king way. I’m done with that story.”

Succinctly summing up the wants of many a film critic, Craig commented that for the next film he plans to “lie on a beach for the first half an hour drinking a cocktail.”

Craig wants to re-instil the ‘fun’ into the franchise and even hinted the return of a couple of old characters.

“Let’s try and find where Moneypenny came from and where Q comes from. Let’s do all that and have some fun with it.”

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